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Huawei Cloud generates over $5m revenue in Africa

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Stone He, president for the Huawei Cloud Business in Southern Africa.
Stone He, president for the Huawei Cloud Business in Southern Africa.

Huawei says its cloud business has generated more than $5 million in revenue over the past year and garnered more than 1 000 partner organisations in Africa.

Despite operational difficulties brought about by US sanctions in 2019 and 2020, coupled with the global pandemic, the Chinese telecoms giant says the Huawei Cloud business performance was largely in line with forecasts.

SA has witnessed increased activity in the cloud space over the past few years, with companies like Amazon Web Services, Microsoft and Huawei making significant inroads in the local cloud market.

In 2019, Huawei rolled out Huawei Cloud, “its first availability zone” for cloud services in SA. In 2020, the telecoms giant introduced another availability zone, also based in Johannesburg.

While the Chinese firm does not yet own any data centres locally, it is offering localised public cloud services from leased data centres through a Johannesburg-based partner.

Huawei Cloud now has four points of presence in Africa, two in SA, one in Nigeria and one in Kenya.

At an online media briefing today, Stone He, the new president for the Huawei Cloud Business in Southern Africa, said the $5 million in revenue was mainly generated from SA, with some parts coming from Nigeria and Kenya.

He noted plans are in place to add another cloud availability zone in Cape Town in the near future.

“We will look to increase the number of these data centres as the demand for cloud services grows. We currently serve customers in 12 countries, with plans to grow rapidly as the need arises,” said He.

“We are also proud of our three-fold increase in our customer base, and our registered South Africa partners have doubled. We predict these numbers to grow substantially over the next few months, and we see SA becoming a cloud hub for the continent.”

In SA, during 2020, Huawei has seen great business growth in public cloud and hybrid cloud, with significant investments from the public and finance sectors as well as from the telecommunication industry, added He.

According to a recent IDC cloud report, despite the increased adoption of public cloud services in SA, many organisations still face several challenges. These range from a lack of good managed services providers to cloud migration difficulties.

Huawei Cloud SA says it will invest heavily in cloud training and marketing support for its partners. The company currently offers cloud training to consumers, tertiary students and SMME entrepreneurs and developers.

“We will be increasing our investment in the cloud business. In the next two to three years, we aim to train more people in SA to improve our partners’ capability and allow them to be the experts who will know how to use the cloud platform to improve the quality of their servers, save costs and improve end-user experience. This is the mission of Huawei cloud in SA,” noted He.

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